Joined: 20 Aug 2004 Posts: 2968 Location: Portland, Maine, USA
Posted: Fri Oct 14, 2011 10:18 am Post subject: Sash Disassembly
Sash are made so that they can be disassembled for repairs.
Removing Steel Sash Pins
To get steel pins out of wood sash joints:
Find the pin's exact location
Locate the steel pin with a magnetic stud-finder. (You can see a photo of one in use by looking way down below on this webpage at the slide show of Ginger repairing a sash, see the fifth slide.) Locating the pin from both faces of the sash will give you an indication if the pin is on an angle or goes straight through the sash.
Determine which face of the sash the pin was inserted into. You may see a hole that has been filled with putty. You may see just a slight slit or blemish in the wood surface. Work an ice pick or narrow awl into the hole to dig out the putty, or widen the slit slightly, and feel the end of the sash pin, but don't make the hole in the sash any bigger in diameter than the sash pin or drift pin you will use next.
If the original steel pin is in good condition and I can drift it out cleanly leaving a good hole, I'll sometimes put the original pin back in the old hole, or put in a pin new that is slightly larger in diameter. Other times I'll fill the old pin hole with wood-epoxy repair methods and put a pin in another location.
Lay the sash down flat on a soft pine board
the soft pine backs up the wood around the emerging pin and usually keeps the pin from splitting out the wood of the sash.
Drive the pin on through the sash
Use a drift pin about the same diameter of the steel pin (usually 1/8", 5/32" or 3/16" diameter), until the pin sticks out the other side of the sash about 1/4", Use a parallel-sided drift pin, rather than a nail set that has tapered sides that can wedge and split the wood of the sash. You can make a drift pin by taking a 16- or 20-penny nail and filing or grinding off the point.
Pull out the pin
Turn the sash over and grab the pin with vice-grips, while twisting the pin pull it out.
I used to always drill the pins out with a hollow core bit, but the method above works better and is quicker if the pin is in good condition.
Removing Steel Pins with Hollow Core Bit Method
If the original pin is rusty it may be bound by the rust to the wood, or enough moisture may have gotten in around the pin to leave the pin somewhat loose. In these cases I drill the pin out with a hollow core bit and then when reassembling the sash I'll put the joint back together with a wooden peg.
Here is the hollow core bit method (see photos 5 through 8):
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